I Will Teach You to be Rich: Book Review

Right away there are two problems with this book: the title and the cover. Okay, there sort of the same thing. I know you’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover, but you might just judge a reader by their book. I like to carry whatever I’m reading everywhere I go, but this book’s silly title and garish colors made me want to hide it. Guess I need a Kindle.

Author Ramit Sethi knows that the title for his book sounds like a scam, but he’s smart enough to know that promises like, “I will teach you to be rich” do get attention. I’ve been following Sethi’s blog for over a year, so I felt like I knew him well enough to accept the silly title and colors.

In general, financial books typically fall into two categories: those that are complex and boring, and those that are too basic. I Will Teach You to be Rich is like little bear’s porridge—it’s just right and you’ll eat it up. Ramit talks to his readers as if there are no stupid questions. Some comments on Amazon have said that the information is too basic. These readers miss the point of the book. The objective of I Will Teach You to be Rich is to demystify finance. He really wants you to get started. Is it really a six-week program to restyle your finances? Maybe, maybe not. You could create a new financial strategy but I’d guess that most people wouldn’t follow this book as a regimen.

Things I really like about this book are…

Realistic examples: Ramit scripts customer service conversations that sound real. He tells you what to say. It’s like having a friend coach you through. I liked these so much I blogged about them a few weeks ago.

Chapter 7: This is the investing chapter. I love that Ramit takes the scary out of investing.

Ramit is a CU fan: That’s CU for Credit Union. He uses banks too, but he grabs the good stuff from both.

This book is for you if…

You are young. The target audience for this book is the 20 something gang. However, anyone who is just becoming interested in controlling their financial destiny, no matter what age, would learn from this book.

It’s not for you if…

· You already have a decent performing 401(k) IRA and other investments.

· You need advice on a complex financial situation, like divorce or estate planning.

· You’re looking for some secret elixir to make you rich.

The take away word from I Will Teach You to be Rich is “automation”. Use technology to simplify and automate your finances so you don’t even have to think about it. Tools like direct deposit and automatic transfer are your personal assistants on your path to becoming rich.

Is it worth reading? Yes. It’s even easier than a Suze Orman but has more depth than a Dave Ramsey.

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